LibriVox recording of The Story of Mankind by Hendrik van Loon.
Read by Michelle Crandall and Kara Shallenberg.
Relates the story of western civilization from earliest times through the beginning of the twentieth century, with special emphasis on the people and events that changed the course of history. Portrays in vivid prose the achievements of mankind in the areas of art and discovery, as well as the political forces leading to the modern nation-states. Richly illustrated with drawings by the author. Winner of the first Newbery Award in 1922, The Story of Mankind has introduced generations of children to the pageant of world history. (Summary from mainlesson.com)
January 15, 2011 Subject:
A Not to Be Missed Book--Or Left Behind, Even 'When Worlds Collide'
The two readers do a wonderful job of conveying van Loon's warm and humanistic history of mankind for children of all ages.
The book The Story of Mankind was featured as one of the few books thought worthy of being salvaged from an earth about to be destroyed by colliding planets in the George Pal sci-fi classic 'When Worlds Collide', for good reason.
Many of the lessons that van Loon conveys from the dawn of time to the Modern World (I know he vehemently disagrees with the latter term, since he considers man only a little removed from the cave, is used for reference purpose only).
I find his discussion of the circumstances surrounding The French Revolution and The Ship of State at the end, particularly edifying. I personally enjoyed his discussion of the Marquis de Condorcet who he brings up in both time periods. As well as his use of Irony and Pity at the end to be our assessors and judges for a humanist society.
This makes a good bed timing hearing for all those whose historical knowledge may be sketchy at spots (again for children of all ages), bravo to the two readers! Sorry, it took so long for someone to applaud their great selection choice and very pleasant and inviting, humanistic, family-friendly reading.